How to Fix Wobbly Furniture
I just hate furniture that wobbles, don't you? And you can't always tell whether you have a problem at
the store. Sometimes it seems balanced there and seems to get an infection in one leg by the time you get
it home. Well, if you're the victim of furniture that isn't exacting, or you've had a piece or two that
have seen better years, don't fret, because fixing it might be easier than you think. But you should be
sure to attack the problem as soon as you find it. Don't let it get worse cause it's like a cavity, it
won't get better and it's likely to need a "filling".
First you have to look carefully at the furniture
and determine how the leg is supposed to be attached in the first place. Some will have round pegs on
one end and it fits into a round opening on the underside of the seat. To make sure the chair is secure,
these types of chairs usually have a couple bars of wood ("stretchers") that are placed underneath the
seat and help secure the legs in place.
Other types of chairs and furniture use wood
braces that are placed diagonally across the corners underneath and are attached to the legs with
Next you're going to want to protect the top of the
table or other piece of furniture, so spread a blanket on the floor, or newspapers or anything that is
non-abrasive. Turn the piece on it's top end and study the way the legs are attached and how they relate
to each other. Often it's a simple matter of one leg getting dislodged from its socket. Or it may be that
a screw has loosened. No problem.
But if you have a chair with a loose socket, you'll
need to reglue the joint. Take the leg off completely and remove all the old glue with sandpaper or coarse
steel wool. Use a little vinegar for stubborn areas. Don't worry. This won't be seen when it's put back
You need the peg to have a little friction when you
put it in or take it out of the hole. If it slides in and out very easily, you have to build out the size
of the peg. Wrap silk thread around the peg to build it out until you have a snug fit. Repeat, if necessary,
to the other legs as well.
Now spread wood glue around the peg and inside the
socket hole on the underneath side of the seat. Use a cotton swab to spread the glue inside the hole. When
you have replaced all the legs in the chair, return it to its upright position and check to make sure it
sits squarely on the floor. Be sure to clamp the joints for 24 hours. This should give it ample time to
To further keep the legs in proper alignment with
each other, wrap them to each other while under pressure. This is the perfect assignment for a bungee cord.
Simply wrap it around all four legs and hock the ends together. If you're only securing 2 legs at a time,
use a tourniquet-type wrap.
Then by looping a length of rope around the legs
and tying the ends together, you can place a length of wood (dowel) in the gap between the ropes and twist
it tight. When you have it tight enough, wedge a pice of wood in place.
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